Teas used in composting at Grand Pré

Wendy Elliott welliott@kingscountynews.ca
Published on July 17, 2014

Brian Ives from FarmaSea Co-op near Antigonish spoke about comfrey tea at the ‘tea party’ in Grand Pré recently. The co-op specializes in body care products, certified organic medicinal plants and extracts, seaweed products and soil amendments. - Wendy Elliott – www.kingscountynews.ca

©Wendy Elliott

The Centre for Small Farms in Grand Pré held a summer ‘tea party’ on June 30 and brought in several composting experts from across the province.

Gilbert Doelle from Wild Rose Farm in Digby County spoke to about 30 people who attended about herbal tea for plant diseases.

Organizer Karen Shepherd said the main focus of the garden and farm, which is an offshoot of Just Us Coffee, is to improve food and farming literacy.

Chaiti Seth, who works there two days a week, says the varied plots in the garden focus on many aspects of growing, from attracting insects, historic Acadian plants, women’s plants and children’s gardens.

Seth prepared detail signage to explain the idea behind the plots and has been raising plants from the global south.

The garden has two farmers-in-residence, Sarah and Joey Pittoello, who are raising crops at the centre for the nearby Just Us Café.

Other speakers at the event included Josh Oulton of Taproot Farms in Port Williams, who discussed compost tea; Stephan Hederich of Green Dragon Farm near Tatamagouche, who introduced stinging nettle and dandelion tea; Brian Ives from the FarmaSea Co-op spoke on comfrey tea; and Ian Curry from Nikian Landscapes outlined effective microorganisms.

“We are having other events this summer and people are welcome to self tour the farm at any time. Often we are out there to chat with people,” Shepherd said.

The next event planned is a visit by Sandor Katz, a well-known fermented food specialist. He will be hosting a workshop on Aug. 26

Weblink www.centreforsmallfarms.ca.